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INTERNATIONAL PARALYMPIC COMMITTEE

African Paralympic Committee Holds General Assembly and Conference

As well as holding elections, the African Paralympic Committee highlighted plans to strengthen the Paralympic Movement on the continent 30 May 2012
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The African Paralympic Committee held its 2012 General Assembly in Luanda, Angola

ⒸNPC Angola
By IPC

“Sport is an important tool for active inclusion of all persons in society and we should invest strong efforts to work towards the equal inclusion of all persons with a disability in particular."

The African Paralympic Committee (APC) General Assembly, held on 23 May 2012 in Luanda, Angola, re-elected Leonel Da Rocha Pinto as President and Rodrigo Bejarano Restrepo as Secretary General. The APC is the regional governing body for the Paralympic Movement and represents 41 National Paralympic Committees from across the continent.

 

Hamid El Aouni of Morocco and Jairus Mogalo of Kenya were elected as the APC’s first Vice-Presidents.

 

Four representatives from the different language groups were also elected: Mostafa Fkeuoi of Morocco for Arabic, Serge Trazie of the Ivory Coast for French, Johnson Jasson Meela of Tanzania for English and Antonio Da Luz of Angola for Portuguese.

 

Khaled Rgibi of Libya was elected as Treasurer.

 

The African Development Conference began the following day and continued until 25 May. It focused on elite sport and how athletes can function as ambassadors for change.

 

The conference highlighted the need for the APC, International Paralympic Committee (IPC), local organizations, national governments and other partners to communicate well and work effectively together.

 

Wilfried Lemke, the United Nations Secretary General’s Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace held a keynote speech at the conference on “Social Legacy of Disability Sports”.

 

"It is one of the main goals of the United Nations and a priority in my work to advance the position of persons with disabilities all around the world,” Lemke told the conference delegates.

 

“Sport is an important tool for active inclusion of all persons in society and we should invest strong efforts to work towards the equal inclusion of all persons with a disability in particular."

 

On Tuesday (22 May), the Angolan Minister for Social Welfare, Joao Baptista Kussumua, while speaking at the Conference, declared that efforts are underway to sign and ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. In a meeting with the Minister, Lemke thanked him for the initiative and encouraged a timely ratification of the Convention.

 

Lemke also presented plans to visit with APC President Leonel Da Rocha Pinto a number of African countries, which have not signed and ratified the Convention so far.

 

Adopted by the UN General Assembly in December 2006 and entered into force in May 2008, the Convention has been signed by 153 countries and ratified by 112 of them so far.

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